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How to Know If Your Design is Deceptive

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Most designers agree that bait-and-switch ads are deceptive. But what about pre-selected checkboxes? Countdown checkout clocks? Confirm shaming?

Designers we surveyed agreed that these newer methods are, in fact, dark patterns. Officially, dark patterns are the deceptive user-interface designs that lead users to make uninformed or unintended decisions. Dark patterns have evolved with tech advancements and regulations. Today, many appear semi-dark. While this term might seem like an improvement, it’s not. Instead, the influx of gray areas are a sign that it’s harder for both users and designers to identify.

“Dark patterns have evolved to be less extreme and, therefore, less visible. Now